- Previous College:
- Western Washington, 1992
- Head Coach
- Last College:
- 10th Year
Fresh off the most successful season in program history, Derrek Falor returns to Cleveland State for his ninth season as the head coach of the women's soccer program with one goal in mind: win the Horizon League championship.
After winning 10 matches last year, the most in the eight year history of the program, and an offseason that produced one of the most talented recruiting classes in school history, Falor believes his program is ready to take the next step up the Horizon League ledger.
The only coach in the history of the Cleveland State women's soccer program, Falor has steadily built the program from winless seasons in the first two years to being one victory away from the league's regular season title in 2010. In that time, he has coached three first team All-Horizon League selections, six players who have earned All-Ohio honors and the 2010 Horizon League Goalkeeper of the Year.
Last year, Natalie Daniels became the first player in program history to earn all-league honors in four consecutive seasons.
In addition, the team got off to the best start in program history, winning seven of its first 10 matches. After a brief mid-season struggle, Falor's group rebounded to go 2-0-1 over its last three matches, clinching fourth place in the Horizon League and a first round league championship match at home for the second straight season.
The 10 wins in 2011 continued the upward trend for the Vikings. After winning no matches in either of the first two years of existance, the Vikings won three matches in 2006 and pushed the win total to five in 2007 and eight in 2008 season before winning nine in 2010 and 10 last season.
Cleveland State has also started to build a home field advantage under Falor, as the Vikings produced a program-best 7-2-2 record at Krenzler Field in 2010. Over the last four seasons, CSU has posted an 18-13-6 mark at home.
A big believer in ball control offense, Falor has steadily improved his team's scoring while concurrently tightening up its defensive play.
After allowing 95 goals in 2004, the Vikings lowered the total to 68 in 2005, 54 in 2006, 51 in 2007, 39 during 2008, 25 in 2010 and 22 last season. At the other end of the field, the Vikings have gradually increased their scoring total from four in 2004 to 23 in 2007, 19 during 2008, 24 in 2010 and 25 last season. Shots on goal have surged from 112 in the inaugural year to almost double in 2007 with 197 and a school-record 211 last season.
When Falor was hired in February of 2003, he was charged with developing the program from scratch. He implemented an 18-month plan that culminated in 2004 when the Vikings began the inaugural season of women's soccer at CSU.
A sports psychology major in college, Falor knew that the success of the team during the first several seasons wouldn't be based on wins and losses, but by how well the program was set up for success in the future. Playing with a roster that has been dominated by underclassmen - CSU had just two seniors during the first three seasons - Falor knew that he needed to look to gradually improve the Viking roster over the course of the following seasons.
The passion that Falor displays for coaching has been evident in the process that he has used in developing the Viking program, following a step-by-step plan to address all the necessary growth aspects of the program.
After coming to CSU, Falor focused the majority of his energy on recruiting, searching northeast Ohio and the surrounding area for players that he felt fit into his vision of the program. He accomplished just that, signing an inaugural class of 12 players in February of 2004 who he felt would be the cornerstone of the program for years to come.
A two-year starter on the men's soccer squad at Shoreline College in Seattle, Wash. (1987-88), Falor transferred to Western Washington in 1989, earning a bachelor's degree in exercise science and sports psychology in 1992.
Falor remained at Western Washington, serving as a graduate assistant coach for both the men's and women's soccer teams for two years (1993-94) while earning his master's in sports psychology in 1995.
Falor received his first collegiate head coaching position in 1995 when he was promoted to women's head coach at Western Washington. He compiled a 56-47-10 mark in six seasons, the second highest win total by a head coach in school history, and helped the Vikings to top-three conference finishes each year.
Falor moved to DePaul in 2001 where he assisted in all facets of coaching, including recruiting, travel management, technical and tactical player development, mental skills training, and fundraising.
He helped the Blue Demons turn around a struggling program, as DePaul won just three matches prior to his arrival but improved to six in 2001 and 10 in 2002.
A native of Seattle, Washington, Falor married the former Camille Anne Beatty in 1992. The couple has two sons, Mason and Elliot, and reside in Lakewood.